updated 05:30 pm EST, Tue February 21, 2006
New Canon lenses, EOS
Canon today unveiled the 8.2 megapixel EOS 30D Digital SLR camera along with two new lenses for photo pros and enthusiasts, as well as the PowerShot S3 IS digital camera with a 12X IS zoom lens. The EOS 30D includes Canon's proprietary 8.2-megapixel APS-C size CMOS sensor, powerful DIGIC II Imaging processor, fast five fps shooting capability and field-tested tough construction. It can be purchased at a body-only price of $1,400 or as a kit with an EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 II zoom lens for about $1,500. The PowerShot S3 IS will be available in May for an estimated price of $500.
PowerShot S3 IS
This Image Stabilizer provides up to three stops of camera shake correction in shutter speed equivalent. It is essential when engaging the camera's retractable 12x optical zoom lens because the extension of a long lens magnifies camera shake in direct proportion with the amount of lens magnification employed.
The camera's 12x zoom lens has an equivalent film focal length of 36-432mm (f/2.7 at wide angle and f/3.5 at telephoto). The optical zoom can be augmented by the camera's 4x digital zoom raising the maximum (35mm equivalent) focal length to that of a 1728mm lens. This UD lens features a high-speed silent zoom function powered by a micro motor USM drive, and for extreme close-ups, the camera's macro and super macro mode permit shooting a subject as close as 0-inches from the end of the lens barrel.
Canon's PowerShot S3 includes a movie recording function in high-quality VGA (640 x 480 pixels) at 30fps, which can be increased to 60fps in QVGA (420 X 240) movie mode. MovieSnap enables the user to capture high-resolution six megapixel still images while recording movies.
The camera features a Sports Mode that allows users to select high shutter speeds and the camera automatically selects the appropriate aperture for capturing action shots. The camera also includes a new widescreen 16:9 ratio resolution setting that facilitates creating panoramic-style prints.
Additionally, the new model supports 23 languages (now including Thai and Arabic) and has an improved direct printing function.
EOS 30D digital SLR
While the EOS 30D SLR uses the same 35-zone metering sensor as its predecessor, Canon has added a spot metering capability that covers approximately 3.5 percent of the viewfinder area at the center. There are now four metering modes offered on the camera: Evaluative (set automatically in the Basic Zone modes), partial (approximately 9 percent), centerweighted average and spot. AF-point linked Evaluative metering, E-TTL II autoflash and 12 exposure control modes (11 AE modes plus manual) are unchanged from the EOS 20D SLR.
Also new is the camera's 2.5-inch LCD screen with 230,000-pixel resolution, wide 170-degree viewing angle, and LED-backlight design.
New Lenses: EF-S 17-55mm and EF 85mm
The EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM is a revision of Canon's EF 85mm f/1.2L USM lens. The lens boasts improvements in AF speed as well lens coatings that minimize ghost and flare. In addition to its 1.8x faster auto focus, the lens offers high-speed manual focus, distance encoding for E-TTL II flash, and a circular aperture diaphragm that improves the appearance of background areas. The EF 85mm f/1.2L II USM will be available in March for an estimated selling price of $2,100.